286 AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF JOHN FRITZ
" Probably greater than McNeiU was his junior. Whistler. . . . In 1835 the Russian government determined to bufld a Une from St. Petersburg to Moscow. A conmiission of Russian engineers suggested Major Whistler to take charge of this work, and he accepted in 1842. The road and its equipment were planned by Iflm in detafl. . . . His report upon the gauge to be selected has been pro¬ nounced one of the finest models of any engineering docu¬ ment ever written. ... In building of engines, all parts were standardized and interchangeable. Whistler died in 1849. Another graduate of West Point, T. S. Brown, was invited to succeed hfln. ... In a hasty inspection of the records, I have been able to count 49 graduates who have been chief engineers, and 22 who have been presidents of raflroads. Many have acted in these capacities on several raflroads, and the Ust would be long indeed of those who have served as resident or assistant engineers."
Now, as to our honored guest. We are here to-iflght to testify our respect, our admiration, our afi'ection for that sturdy engineer, that noble man, — John Fritz. He has Uved a Ufe which we may well strive to emulate, and made a record we all delight to honor. Longfellow says:
" But age is opportunity no less Than youth, though in another dress; And as the evening twilight fades away The sky is filled with stars, invisible by day."
It is my hope and my prayer, it is the hope and prayer- of aU of us, that these stars, even though invisible to us, may shine brightly and serenely upon the pathway of John Fritz untfl the day comes when the great Archangel sounds the last taps and the lamp of Ufe is extinguished. (Hearty and continued applause.)
Tbds Toastmaster: — We wifl now have a few extracts